USSPACECOM Campaign Plan, New Mission Focus on Defeating Adversaries

PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo (U.S. Space Command PR) — U.S. Space Command reached a critical milestone as the Department of Defense’s 11th Combatant Command by finalizing the command’s campaign plan, which incorporates a new mission statement placing greater emphasis on preparing for, defending against and deterring threats.

The campaign plan provides guidance to USSPACECOM’s staff and components on day-to-day operations, activities and investments to achieve the command’s mission in support of DoD and national security objectives.

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U.S. Space Force Searches for U.S. Space Command Headquarters Location

Washington, D.C. (AFNS)  — With the establishment of the United States Space Force, the Department of the Air Force, in coordination with the Office of Secretary of Defense, is announcing its revised approach for determining the permanent location of U.S. Space Command headquarters.

The revised approach considers the newly established U.S. Space Force emerging organizational structure and analyzes its effects on the limited number of highly specialized personnel and infrastructure required to support both the Space Force and Space Command. Additionally, the approach expands the number of locations eligible for consideration to host the permanent U.S. Space Command headquarters, and provides a comprehensive and transparent analysis before selecting a final location.

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A Summary of U.S. Counterspace Capabilities

Global Counterspace Capabilities:
An Open Source Assessment

Secure World Foundation
April 2020

Full Report

The following excerpt from the report summarizes U.S. counterspace capabilities.

The United States has conducted multiple tests of technologies for rendezvous and proximity operations (RPO) in both low Earth orbit (LEO) and geosynchronous Earth orbit (GEO), along with tracking, targeting, and intercept technologies that could lead to a co-orbital anti-satellite (ASAT) capability.

These tests and demonstrations were conducted for other non-offensive missions, such as missile defense, on-orbit inspections, and satellite servicing, and the United States does not have an acknowledged program to develop co-orbital capabilities. However, the United States possesses the technological capability to develop a co-orbital capability in a short period of time if it chooses to.

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Russia Tests Direct-ascent Anti-satellite Missile

PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo., April 15, 2020 (U.S. Space Command PR) — U.S. Space Command is aware and tracking Russia’s direct-ascent anti-satellite (DA-ASAT) missile test April 15.

“Russia’s DA-ASAT test provides yet another example that the threats to U.S. and allied space systems are real, serious and growing,” said Gen. John W. “Jay” Raymond, USSPACECOM commander and U.S. Space Force Chief of Space Operations. “The United States is ready and committed to deterring aggression and defending the Nation, our allies and U.S. interests from hostile acts in space.”

Russia’s missile system is capable of destroying satellites in low Earth orbit (LEO) and comes on the heels of Russia’s on-orbit testing the U.S. highlighted in February, namely COSMOS 2542 and COSMOS 2543. These satellites, which behaved similar to previous Russian satellites that exhibited characteristics of a space weapon, conducted maneuvers near a U.S. Government satellite that would be interpreted as irresponsible and potentially threatening in any other domain.

“This test is further proof of Russia’s hypocritical advocacy of outer space arms control proposals designed to restrict the capabilities of the United States while clearly having no intention of halting their counterspace weapons programs,” Raymond said. “Space is critical to all nations and our way of life. The demands on space systems continue in this time of crisis where global logistics, transportation and communication are key to defeating the COVID-19 pandemic.

“It is a shared interest and responsibility of all spacefaring nations to create safe, stable and operationally sustainable conditions for space activities, including commercial, civil and national security activities,” Raymond concluded.

USSF Announces Initial Operational Capability and Operational Acceptance of Space Fence

Space Fence (Credit: DOT&E)

By 2nd Lt. Kristen Shimkus
U.S. Space Force Public Affairs

PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. — United States Space Force officials formally declared initial operational capability and operational acceptance of the Space Fence radar system, located on Kwajalein Island in the Republic of the Marshall Islands, March 27, 2020.

Space Fence provides significantly improved space surveillance capabilities to detect and track orbiting objects such as commercial and military satellites, depleted rocket boosters and space debris in low, medium, and geosynchronous Earth orbit regimes.

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Russian Spacecraft Inspecting U.S. Spy Satellite

Gen. John Raymond

CNN is reporting that Russian “inspector” satellites are maneuvering near a U.S. government reconnaissance satellite.

“Last November the Russian government launched a satellite that subsequently released a second satellite,” US Space Command Commander and the Space Force’s Chief of Space Operations Gen. John Raymond said in a statement Monday.

“These satellites have been actively maneuvering near a U.S. government satellite and behaving similar to another set of satellites that Russia deployed in 2017, and which the Russian government characterized as ‘inspector satellites.’ “

[….]

“The purpose of the experiment is to continue work on assessing the technical condition of domestic satellites,” the Russian Defense Ministry said in a statement at the time.

Raymond said Monday that Russia’s recent actions place the county among nations that “have turned space into a warfighting domain.”

U.S. Space Force Officially Established as Sixth Branch of Armed Services

ARLINGTON, Va., December 20, 2019 (AFNS) — Today the President signed the 2020 National Defense Authorization Act and with it, directed the establishment of the U.S. Space Force as the sixth branch of the armed forces.

“We are at the dawn of a new era for our Nation’s Armed Forces. The establishment of the U.S. Space Force is an historic event and a strategic imperative for our Nation. Space has become so important to our way of life, our economy, and our national security that we must be prepared as a Nation to protect it from hostile actions,” said Secretary of Defense, Mark T. Esper. “Our Military Services have created the world’s best space capabilities. Now is the time for the U.S. Space Force to lead our Nation in preparing for emerging threats in an evolving space environment. This new service will help ensure we are postured to deter aggression, defend our national interests and outpace potential adversaries.”

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Ceremony Marks Establishment of U.S. Space Command

Gen. John W. “Jay” Raymond, U.S. Space Command commander, recognized the establishment of USSPACECOM , the nation’s 11th combatant command, in a joint ceremony at Peterson Air Force Base, Sept. 9 2019. (Credit: U.S. Air Force/Staff Sgt. Dennis Hoffman)

PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. (USAF PR) —U.S. Space Command Commander Gen. John W. “Jay” Raymond recognized the establishment of the nation’s 11th combatant command in a joint ceremony here today.

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AIAA Applauds Creation of Space Command

RESTON, Va. (AIAA PR) – The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) applauds the establishment of the U.S. Space Command. The new combatant command prioritizes the protection of our assets and sustains our advantages in space.

AIAA Executive Director Daniel L. Dumbacher made the following statement after the official ceremony to stand up U.S. Space Command:

“Space is essential to each and every one of us. Not only is it critical to U.S. military operations, but it is vital for civilian and commercial applications as well. Perhaps no one better understands that than AIAA’s members and community. With the reality that space is a contested environment, we welcome the U.S. government’s establishment of U.S. Space Command (USSPACECOM) as the entity responsible for ensuring free and open access to space.

The Institute, through our DEFENSE Forum and ASCEND event, as well as technical resources, looks forward to working with General John Raymond and the Command leadership to accomplish its missions of missile warning, satellite operations, space control and space support. We look forward to working with USSPACECOM to ensure that space remains conflict free and open to all.”

New Combatant Commander Begins Organizing Space Force

WASHINGTON, D.C. (U.S. Space Command PR) —U.S. Space Command Commander General John W. “Jay” Raymond, in his first official directives, established two subordinate commands that will jointly provide support to the new Unified Combatant Command.

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Combined Force Space Component Command Established at Vandenberg AFB

Gen. John Raymond

By Maj. Cody Chiles
Combined Force Space Component Command Public Affairs

VANDENBERG AIR FORCE BASE, Calif., Aug. 30, 2019 — Gen. John W. “Jay” Raymond, Commander, U.S. Space Command (USSPACECOM), ordered the establishment of two subordinate commands to support the warfighting efforts of the command — Combined Force Space Component Command (CFSCC), and Joint Task Force Space Defense (JTF-SD), immediately following the establishment of USSPACECOM Aug. 29, 2019.

Raymond appointed Maj. Gen. Stephen N. Whiting as CFSCC Commander, and Brig. Gen. Matthew W. Davidson as the Deputy Commander; with a mission to plan, integrate, conduct, and assess global space operations in order to deliver combat relevant space capabilities to Combatant Commanders, Coalition partners, the Joint Force, and the Nation.

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U.S. Space Command Established

White House Announcement

“When it comes to defending America, it is not enough to merely have an American presence in space. We must have American dominance in space.”

President Donald J. Trump

ESTABLISHING SPACE COMMAND: Today, at the direction of President Donald J. Trump, the Secretary of Defense established the United States Space Command to ensure space superiority.

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GAO: DOD Needs to Collect & Maintain Better Data on Space Acquisition Workforce

The Department of Defense (DOD) does not routinely monitor the size, mix, and allocation of the 8,000 personnel who are involved in space acquisition activities, according to a new report from the Government Accountability Office (GAO).

[Full Report — PDF]

The audit found the DOD’s workforce data systems are not configured to identify personnel working on space acquisition activities across the department’s sprawling bureaucracy.

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Pentagon Seeks $14.1 Billion for Military Space Programs

by Douglas Messier
Managing Editor

The Department of Defense (DOD) has requested to spend $14.1 billion on space programs in FY 2020, an amount that includes the establishment of a Space Force within the U.S. Air Force and a new Space Development Agency.

“The FY 2020 budget accelerates our efforts to move to a defendable space posture, which is critical as our adversaries continue to develop capabilities to counter our advantages in space,” the DOD said in budget documents. “This budget invests in the survivable and resilient Next Generation Overhead Persistent Infrared system and continues modernization of our GPS satellites communications systems and space warfighting enterprise.”

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Remarks by Vice President Pence at Kennedy Space Center

Mike Pence

THE VICE PRESIDENT: Thank you, Madam Secretary. Yeah, great words. Great words. Well, thank you, Secretary Wilson. Thank you for that introduction and thank you for your great leadership of the United States Air Force.

And I want to thank our host today, the Kennedy Space Center, Bob Cabana, and the entire team. To General Selva, who joins us here today; to all of our distinguished guests; to General Shess; but especially to the airmen of the 45th Space Wing and your families, it is great to be here at the Kennedy Space Center, the “World’s Premier Gateway to Space.” Thank you all.

And I want to bring greetings this morning, first and foremost, to a great champion of American leadership in space and a great champion of America’s military personnel and your families. I want to bring greetings from the 45th President of the United States of America, President Donald Trump.

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